This article is part of our FanDuel MLB series.
Once again, weather looks nice for Friday's slate even if it's a bit warm across the country (high 90s in Detroit). This is a perfect slate to play because there's a nice variety of high-end pitching and also plenty of inconsistent arms to go against for hitting.
Whether you want to go all in or save a few bucks, there are a lot of ways to go at pitcher. Justin Verlander ($10,700) hasn't been worth the price in his last few starts because in addition to allowing runs, he has 18 strikeouts in his last three. Jacob deGrom ($10,600) has eight walks in his last three outings and while a matchup with San Francisco has often been a good thing this season, that may not be the case right now. The Giants have some of the better numbers against righty arms in the last month with a 20.2 K% and .335 wOBA. Hyun-Jin Ryu ($10,500) is the most consistent option, sporting a ridiculous .202 wOBA allowed at home to go with a 2.67 xFIP. The Marlins have hit southpaws well, but I'm not backing them to break Ryu's dominant streak at home. Patrick Corbin ($11,000) has pitched better than Verlander and deGrom of late, allowing six runs to go with 45 strikeouts in his last five starts. The Braves aren't an easy matchup, but their 23.9 K% against lefties since the beginning of June is below average.
If you want to bank on matchup Shane Bieber ($10,800), David Price ($9,500) and Marcus Stroman ($6,800) all fit the bill. Bieber is easiest to trust against the Royals with a 31.9 K% and that's why he's more expensive than everyone but Corbin. Price is unreliable and hasn't gone more than five innings in his last two starts, though the Orioles have a brutal 26.3 K% and .286 wOBA against lefty arms in the last month. Stroman is the odd ball because he doesn't have much upside, but he faces the Tigers, who can't hit anyone and have a 26.0 K% and .288 wOBA in the last month against righties.
If you want to go against the majority, John Means ($8,100) is an intriguing play against the Red Sox. He's had three decent starts against them, allowing 14 hits and four runs in 17 innings with nine Ks. Not great, but he has potential to hit 40 fantasy points for cheap.
Outside of Stroman, there are a couple cheaper, viable plays, but they aren't easy to trust. Jhoulys Chacin ($6,700) is at least putting in positive performances with 24 or more fantasy points in four of his last five. The same goes for Reynaldo Lopez ($6,600), who didn't give up a run against the A's last start. My biggest gamble is Tyler Mahle ($6,200) mostly because the Cardinals have a league-worst .277 wOBA in the last month against righty hurlers.
There isn't one game that stands out in terms of over/under, but there are some matchups I'd keep an eye on. The Yankees make the most sense against Kyle Freeland, who has poor numbers home and away, seen in his 2.08 HR/9 allowed and 5.58 xFIP on the road. You could put any righty in your squad with Aaron Judge ($4,500) a good start.
The Angels could also turn into a chalk option after destroying Mike Leake last week for eight hits and four runs in the first inning. I'm tentative because Leake has much better numbers at home, allowing a .291 wOBA, including his lone home start against the Angels this year (7 IP, 5 HA, 2 ER). On the other side of that, Mike Trout ($4,900) is 14-for-26 in his career with 10 extra-base hits against Leake. Justin Upton ($3,500), Shohei Ohtani ($3,800) and Andrelton Simmons ($2,900) are slightly behind, though all have averages above .400 in their career against Leake.
The Brewers-Diamondbacks over/under went up half a run immediately after opening (9.5 to 10) and that usually means runs. Chacin has allowed a .355 wOBA to righties to go with a 6.35 xFIP against lefties. Taylor Clarke has been slightly worse, allowing a wOBA close to .400 against both sides of the plate. Christian Yelich ($4,900) is another big bat worth spending on with a .486 OBP in his last 70 plate appearances against righty arms, while Keston Hiura ($3,800), Yasmani Grandal ($3,200) and Eric Thames ($2,800) are a bit more cost effective. Ketel Marte ($3,900) and Christian Walker ($3,300) have consistently gotten on base for Arizona against righties.
If you have to back one team, the Phillies should be a top option against Jordan Lyles, who has allowed a .403 wOBA to lefty bats in addition to giving up at least three runs in his last seven starts. It'd be helpful if Philly had a few more lefties, but Bryce Harper ($3,900), Cesar Hernandez ($2,600) and Adam Haseley ($2,200) will do, especially if you're strapped for cash.
Yankees vs. Kyle Freeland (Rockies)
Freeland has allowed at least three runs in his last four road starts so Coors Field can't be blamed for his bad numbers. This stack hits on the front and back of the lineup and is somewhat reasonable in terms of price. Either way, Judge needs to be in the squad, as he and Torres have New York's highest OBPs against southpaws since the beginning of June, .444 and .432, respectively. LeMahieu has been most consistent with a .398 OBP and .390 wOBA in 93 PA against lefties this season.
Athletics vs. Jake Odorizzi (Twins)
Odorizzi has allowed five homers in his last three starts and one of those included a three-inning loss to the A's in which he gave up five runs and struck out two. His overall numbers are good, but he's fallen off in the last month and still has allowed a .331 wOBA to lefty bats. It'd be nice if the A's had more lefties, but Olson and Grossman will do, and Canha has a .456 OBP in his last 57 PA against righty arms. If Chris Herrmann ($2,700) gets another start behind plate, I'd throw him into the squad, especially since he homered off Odorizzi last meeting.
Blue Jays vs. Jordan Zimmermann (Tigers)
It'll be hard to find a lineup without at least one Blue Jay considering Zimmermann has allowed 21 hits and 14 runs in his last 7.1 innings. He's allowing a .405 OBP to lefties, though his .338 wOBA allowed to righties isn't good. Toronto doesn't have many huge bats, but Sogard and Galvis have been most consistent and the latter's ISO is at .317 in his last 65 PA against righty pitchers.